Building a water catcher??

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Montana Mom, Jun 17, 2004.

  1. Montana Mom

    Montana Mom Well-Known Member

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    Hello!

    I'm in a trailer house with a famously flat roof and I would like to build something to catch the (little) rain we get here. I've got to do it using things I already have, which includes a couple long pieces of skirting, some scrap wood, a long blue plastic pipe, tin buckets, nails, and several handtools.

    Any ideas?
     
  2. Torch

    Torch Well-Known Member

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    In the piney woods of the great state of Texas.
    Where does the water run off the roof? Is it from everywhere or just a few points? I know you don't want to buy anything but you can get an 8 foot plastic gutter at Home Depot for just a few dollars. Use it to capture the water coming off the roof and drain the water into the buckets. The way rain comes off of my roof here I literally can fill a 55 gallon drum in under 2 minutes.
     

  3. I guess the first thing to consider, is it worth it, and is this for drinking or garden use.

    First, you say you get little rain, what types of rains do you get, if all you get is/are slow drizzling rains, then those do not make for productive rain harvesting, for drinking purposes.

    With a 1 inch rain you can obtain about a half gallon per square foot of roof area with a good collection system.

    So does your roof area and any possible extension(s) areas add up to enough area, given your rain fall, to make it worth while?

    Another consideration, if you are wanting to harvest rain fall for potable/drinking water, you need to discard the first 5 gallons or so of the harvested water as it will be contaminated with dirt, bird droppings, etc.
     
  4. Montana Mom

    Montana Mom Well-Known Member

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    Torch
    It just falls off a few points. I'll try the Home Depot next time I go to town. I'm a Native EastTexan and I sure do remember the rain there. Way up here we don't get much. I've been trying to catch in tin buckets on the ground and just not getting squat.

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    Unregistered
    Its for garden use. Its so dry up here I think any conservation is worth my while. Lately we have been getting short storms where it rains hard for an hour or two and then stops.
     
  5. Torch

    Torch Well-Known Member

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    Well if it just falls off a few points then definitely collect it at those points with the buckets. If those few points are in a line then the gutter idea would be best. I hope you have big buckets, a 'hard rain for an hour' generates impressive amounts of rain.
     
  6. I am all for conservation, just wanted to point out some of the underlying basics considerations in case this was for drinking water.

    For several design types plug "rainwater harvesting" in your search engines and it is fairly easy, a little hard work, to make your own ferrocement cistern, this is done all the time in third world areas for drinking water storage. If you are new to cement work this is a nice intro project.
    Good Luck!